Ny Municipalities Still Undecided
Many towns and villages are still undecided. Some are leaving it up to public vote, while others have scheduled meetings to address the question.
Undetermined New York municipalities
As of this writing, 156 municipalities are still seeking public input to decide. That means residents of these towns have time to reach out to local officials and express their opinions.
Additionally, nearly 100 localities have scheduled municipal meetings over the next week to help make their determination. Its critical for residents of these towns to attend.
Places that fail to decide by December 31st will be automatically entered into the program.
Towns Opting In for Dispensaries and Out for Cannabis Cafes
Recreational Marijuana Laws In New York
Yes, New York legalized recreational marijuana in 2021 under SB845A, or the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act.
Who Can Buy Recreational Marijuana?
New Yorkers aged 21 and up can purchase and possess up to 3 ounces of marijuana buds and 24 grams of concentrates. However, there are no operating dispensaries yet, so physically you cant buy weed until the legal infrastructure has been set out.
Traveling With Weed In New York
Traveling with weed in New York is legal, but you must keep it in a child-proof container and away from the drivers reach, preferably on the backseat or in the trunk. However, you cant take marijuana out of the state, as it will be considered as the transportation of drugs its a federal felony that can land you in prison for up to several years.
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Both Recreational And Medical Marijuana Are Legal In New York The State Passed Cannabis Reform With The Signing Of The Marihuana Regulation And Taxation Act On March 31 2021 Sales Projected To Begin Some Time In 2022 In 2014 New York Became The 23rd State To Join The Ranks Of States That Approve Medical Marijuana With The Compassionate Care Act
Despite being somewhat more restrictive than other medical marijuana programs at its onset, New Yorks medical marijuana program has been expanded considerably since launch. On October 5th, 2021, New York’s Cannabis Control Board approved the smokable flower as a permitted form of cannabis for medical marijuana patients.
What You Can Do Now To Support Dispensaries In Ny
If your town is on the list of undecided or leaning towards opting-out, dont lose hope!
Many elected officials cite lack of public support or negative public sentiment as the driving factor for opting out. Reach out to your elected officials, including the Mayor and Board Members, and let them know you support retail sales and consumption lounges in your community. These Boards cant consider social media comments when making their decision, so its essential to reach out to them directly.
As a member of your community, your voice matters, so speak up! Email, call or visit your elected officials in person. You can also find out when public hearings are and attend to show your support.
If your municipality is holding a referendum in November, get out and vote! Every vote in your community matters, so make it a priority and let your friends and family know to do the same.
If your community has decided to opt-out, you can still voice your support for dispensaries because municipalities have the option of opting back in at any time. You can file a petition with your local government or create a citizens referendum.
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When Would Legal Marijuana Sales Begin
The timeline for dispensaries to open and sales to kick off remains distant. The law doesnt provide a specific timeline, but the first sales arent expected until at least 2022.
Officials must first determine how the industry will operate, from the regulation and taxation of sales to the allocation of licenses for cultivators, processors, wholesalers, retailers and delivery services.
A new state Office of Cannabis Management and Cannabis Control Board will craft and oversee the new regulations.
What About Cbd Hemp Oil In New York
CBD hemp oil was legalized in 2018 with the signing of the 2018 Farm Bill. The new law reclassified hemp as an agricultural crop. So now it can be grown and harvested for any use, including food, clothing, construction materials, paper, biofuel, and health supplements like CBD extracts.
You can find CBD hemp oil in local pharmacies, vape stores, head shops, organic health stores, and dispensaries. However, similar to delta 8 THC products, the best companies and deals on CBD is found online.
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Is Medical Cannabis Legal In New York
Yes, medical cannabis is legal in New York. The law allows qualifying patients over the age of 18 to use marijuana.
New York lawmakers passed a medical marijuana bill in 2014. The Department of Health created the medical cannabis program.
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The law allows medical patients to buy up to a 30-day supply of cannabis. Patients can buy liquids, capsules, sprays, oils, and vape products.
New Yorkers may not buy edibles or smokable forms of cannabis.
New York Governor Says Marijuana Legalization Will Create Thousands Of Jobs And Touts Regulatory Appointments
The governor of New York says marijuana legalization will generate thousands and thousands of jobs in the state, and shes touting her recent actions to make regulatory appointments for the industry to get implementation underway.
At the Business Council of New York States annual meeting on Friday, Gov. Kathy Hochul talked about the states business ethic and the importance of supporting markets of all sizes, including cannabis companies.
We do want to go big or go home, and I want to help you get there, she said. I need you to survive because youre the identity of New York that people create jobs and opportunities. You are who we are as New Yorkers. Your success means the success of this entire state.
So count me in as an allysomeone whos going to be there for you, who will fight for you to make sure that we do not lose out to any competition, whether its in the space of cannabis, where I believe theres thousands and thousands of jobs and new industries, to be created that were not even focused on, Hochul said.
The governor has made a point of emphasizing her support for adult-use legalization and standing up the industry since replacing former Gov. Andrew Cuomo , who resigned amid a sexual misconduct scandal last month.
At Fridays meeting, she said, I had to unleash this opportunity that had been stifled for the first five months because a few appointments hadnt been made. Got that done.
Legalization activists arent buying the argument, however.
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Buying Weed Online In New York: Is It Even An Option
Theres a whole new infrastructure involved in setting up cannabis dispensaries for retail sales. Since marijuana is legal in New York, and there are no dispensaries across the state, New Yorkers wonder if they can follow their Canadian neighbors and purchase weed using marijuana delivery services.
Unfortunately, this wont happen for the next few years. Most states are waiting for the federal government to decriminalize marijuana and take it off Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act.
Nevertheless, theres one workaround if you want to order weed online in New York.
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If not, we explain everything below.
Where Will I Be Able To Buy And Consume
Entrepreneurs will eventually be able to apply to the state for licenses to open storefront dispensaries, hookah bar-style consumption lounges, bakeries, restaurants, yoga studios, hotels, and wellness centers, as long as they dont sell alcohol on the premises. Several existing medical marijuana companies are already planning to offer marijuana to the general public, although theyre capped at having a maximum of eight dispensaries with only three three of the eight approved to offer recreational products and two of those must be located in underserved areas. In as little as six years, the marijuana industry could generate $2.6 billion in sales and support 50,806 jobs, according to a Center for New York City Affairs report released in February.
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New York Cannabis Testing Regulations
New York has an expansive list of contaminants that approved third-party labs must test forincluding some that no other state tests for, like salmonella and E. coli.
New York officials point to the comprehensiveness of their medical marijuana programs testing criteria in talking about the 2019 VAPI lung disease outbreak, pointing out that none of the reported illnesses were linked to state-authorized providers.
Driving While Under The Influence
Its illegal to drive while under the influence of cannabis, according to New Yorks Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs law.
Law enforcement officers can request a urine test to detect THC and issue a DWAID charge. However, urine tests can identify THC for weekseven monthsafter a person consumed cannabis last.
Law enforcement officers will also observe a DWAID suspects behavior and physical appearance before making an arrest.
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When Should Marijuana Become Legal In New York
Is marijuana legal in New York? Right now, consuming and possessing cannabis for medical or recreational use is legal in New York.
Cannabis is legal in New York to buy when recreational dispensaries open, which could be in 18 months. Growing will become legal for medical patients in 6 months after Governor Cuomo passed the law. Cultivating weed for recreational purposes will take the longest, as it’s legal 18 months after the first dispensary opens.
New Yorkers and visitors will have to be patient and wait for the state to open up dispensaries.
State Regulations Specify That Patients Must Have One Of The Following Conditions:
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Severe nausea
- Severe or persistent muscle spasms.
The state encourages potential applicants to check back if their condition is not included. New York has added qualifying conditions throughout the years, with the most recent addition, opioid use disorder, occurring on July 12, 2018. As of October 5th, 2021, the state has permanently removed the $50 registration fee for a medical patient or caregiver.Get Your Card
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Ny Towns Embracing The Mrta
The following municipalities have publicly stated they plan to opt in.
Of the municipalities that said no to onsite consumption lounges, 67 said yes to dispensaries,, according to an unofficial tracker created by Cannasigliere. Additionally, 181 counties have said yes to both business types, with another 20 counties leaning towards opt-in.
How Do These New Marijuana Laws Change Criminal Law In General
Violations of the new marijuana laws will result in arrest and prosecution. From reading the New York State bill this will be a highly regulated industry designed primarily to create revenue for the state.
Driving under the influence of marijuana:
Vehicle and Traffic Law section 1192.4, has not been changed by these new marijuana laws. It stands to reason that with the new marijuana laws, New York State law enforcement, will develop new procedures to investigate, arrest and prosecute those who are operating a motor vehicle under the influence of marijuana. The criminal defense of VTL 1192.4 marijuana offenses currently remains the same focusing on levels of impairment and probable cause to arrest as there is yet a reliable field test that police can definitively use to determine the level of marijuana in someone’s system.
The warrantless search of an automobile:
Under New York State Law a distinct odor, such as the smell of marijuana, can provide probable cause for officers to believe that an automobile contains contraband, and thus, a search warrant is not required to search the vehicle.
Considering the changes to the New York State marijuana laws it stands to reason that the smell of marijuana, by itself, can no longer provide probable cause for police officers to search an automobile. In States where marijuana has been legalized, without more, the smell of marijuana alone is no longer justification for a warrantless search of a vehicle.
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What About Other States
More than a dozen other states and Washington, D.C., have taken similar steps.
In New Jersey, Gov. Philip D. Murphy signed into law three bills last month that permit and regulate the use of recreational marijuana. It became the most populous state in the Northeast to opt for legalization.
Penalties for underage possession were also eased, with written warnings and referrals to community services instead of harsh fines or criminal punishments.
Legal sales in New Jersey, however, remain at least several months away.
What Does Legalization Mean For New Yorkers
People who are 21 and older are allowed to use, smoke, ingest or consume cannabis products they can also give them to others who meet the same age requirement.
At home, people will be permitted to store up to five pounds of cannabis, but they will have to take reasonable steps to make sure it is stored in a secure place.
There are penalties, ranging from a simple violation to a felony, for possessing more than the permitted amount of cannabis and for selling the drug without a license.
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New York Medical Marijuana Laws
New York state legislators passed the states first medical marijuana legalization law, S7923, in June 2014.
The law legally protected patients and caregivers and authorized the Department of Health to license and regulate registered organizations to cultivate and sell medical cannabis to patients.
Patients must obtain written certification from their doctor and a registration identification card from the New York Health Department.
Physicians are required by law to document the dosage a patient should take, which determines the 30-day supply each patient may possess. The law forbids the smoking of cannabis by patients but does not explicitly ban patients from accessing cannabis in its dried flower form.
To date, the DOH has allowed licensed dispensaries to sell cannabis in a wide variety of formsincluding vape cartridges, capsules, tablets, oils, oral sprays, and ediblesbut not in the form of smokeable flower.
In November 2015, Gov. Cuomo signed AB 7060, an amendment to the Compassionate Care Act, which expedited access to medical cannabis to critically ill patients ahead of the full opening of registered organizations in 2016.
In August 2017, the DOH began allowing the sale of an expanded range of products, including cannabis-infused lotions, patches, chewable tablets, and lozenges. That same update allowed patients to speak directly to a dispensary representative, and for caregivers to accompany patients into dispensaries.
What Happens To Those With Marijuana Convictions
People with certain marijuana-related convictions for activity that is no longer criminalized will have their records automatically expunged.
There is some precedent for such a move: In 2019, more than 150,000 people with some low-level marijuana convictions in New York had them cleared from their records.
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Cant I Just Grow My Own
The law allows you to cultivate up to six marijuana plants, three mature and three seedlings, or up to 12 per household if you live with another adult. However you cant grow them right away. You have to wait six months after the law passed to start growing if youre a medical marijuana patient. Everybody else must wait 18 months after the first adult-use dispensary opens to allow the market to mature. And details surrounding how seedlings and mature plants will be grown and sold, including licenses for marijuana nurseries, are still in the works.
Waiting To Inhale: Whats Next For Recreational Weed
Every city, town and village in the state has an important decision to make before the end of the year: should they allow marijuana dispensaries and/or consumption spots i.e., a cannabis lounge to operate within their borders?
The state set a Dec. 31, 2021, deadline for municipalities to opt out of one or both of those possibilities. Municipalities that take a pass will not get any tax revenue generated from recreational marijuana sales elsewhere in the state.
So far, at least 593 municipalities in the state have just said no to at least one option as of Tuesday, and at least 272 have publicly said yes to one or the other, according to Heather Trela, a marijuana policy expert at the Rockefeller Institute of Government, who has been tracking those decisions for all of New Yorks roughly 1,500 cities and towns.
That rate is actually a little more permissive compared to some other states where a greater percentage of localities have opted out of statewide legalization, Trela said. Any place in New York that doesnt opt out by New Years Eve is automatically in.
In New Jersey, almost 70% of municipalities opted out of all six categories of marijauna license created in that state, and similar patterns were seen in California, Illinois, Massachusetts and other states, Trela wrote in a recent blog post.
Thanks to little guidance or rules from the state on how sales will work, many municipal leaders are leaning toward no, he contended.
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Office Of Cannabis Management
The state New York State Office of Cannabis Management announced on Monday that medical marijuana doctors now have the power to issue a medical marijuana card to any patient suffering from any medical condition they deem treatable with marijuana or other cannabis-infused remedies.
Also, the New York Cannabis Control Board voted to allow holders of medical marijuana cards to grow plants for personal use.
And in a separate announcement, the New York State Department of Labor declared that employers in the state are no longer allowed to drug test most workers for marijuana.
OCM Executive Director Chris Alexander had this to say:
Launching the new patient certification and registration system and expanding eligibility for the Medical Cannabis Program are significant steps forward for our program. We will continue to implement the MRTA and ensure that all New Yorkers who can benefit from medical cannabis have the access they need to do so. Its important for New Yorkers to know that even as we shift the medical program to the OCM, your access will not be disrupted and the program will continue to expand.
And in an official Cannabis Control Board press release, Chair Tremaine Wright said:
The new rule was actually enacted as part of the recreational marijuana law that was signed by former Gov. Andrew Cuomo last year.
Although New York recreational marijuana dispensaries arent yet open, adults 21 and older are now permitted to possess less than 3 ounces of flower.